Religion And Violence In Early American Methodism: Taking The Kingdom By Force

Hardcover | April 22, 2010

byJeffrey Williams

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Early American Methodists commonly described their religious lives as great wars with sin and claimed they wrestled with God and Satan who assaulted them in terrible ways. Carefully examining a range of sources, including sermons, letters, autobiographies, journals, and hymns, Jeffrey Williams explores this violent aspect of American religious life and thought. Williams exposes Methodism's insistence that warfare was an inevitable part of Christian life and necessary for any person who sought God's redemption. He reveals a complex relationship between religion and violence, showing how violent expression helped to provide context and meaning to Methodist thought and practice, even as Methodist religious life was shaped by both peaceful and violent social action.

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Early American Methodists commonly described their religious lives as great wars with sin and claimed they wrestled with God and Satan who assaulted them in terrible ways. Carefully examining a range of sources, including sermons, letters, autobiographies, journals, and hymns, Jeffrey Williams explores this violent aspect of American r...

Jeffrey Williams is Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:248 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.8 inPublished:April 22, 2010Publisher:Indiana University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0253354447

ISBN - 13:9780253354440

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Foreword by Catherine L. Albanese and Stephen J. Stein
Acknowledgments

Introduction
1. Fighting the Good Fight
2. Contesting the Good Fight: Warfare and the American Revolution
3. The Power to "Kill and Make Alive": The Spiritual Battle and the Body in Post-Revolutionary America
4. Beating Their Plowshares into Swords: Methodists and Violence in Antebellum America
5. Methodist Respectability and the Decline of the Good Fight for Salvation
6. The Christian's Warfare and Social Violence

Notes
Bibliography
Index

Editorial Reviews

"Those interested in religion and violence, and in locating a 'Methodist' strain in American culture, should read this book." -Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, Vol. 108, No. 3 Summer 2010